Liverpool have made an undisclosed offer to sign Real Madrid midfielder Asier Illarramendi ahead of Premier League rivals Arsenal.
According to reports in Spain, the Merseysiders have already made contact with the European champions in a bid to bring the 25-year-old to Anfield, with the player understood to be open to the move.
Illarramendi, signed from Real Sociedad for a reported €32m in July 2013, has made just 22 La Liga starts in almost two seasons under Carlo Ancelotti and was on the substitutes bench for the 1-0 Champions League victory over Atletico Madrid in midweek, despite Madrid having a spate of injuries.
However, Reds’ boss Brendan Rodgers believes he is a ready-made replacement for LA Galaxy-bound Steven Gerrard, while former Madrid teammate and current Bayern Munich midfielder Xabi Alonso is believed to have advised him on moving to Liverpool after his time spent there.
In the meantime, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is monitoring the situation and has the player on his list of potential signings for this summer.